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Limerick people urged to support unionised retail staff

Mike McNamara, president of Limerick Trades Council, Karen Wall, divisional organiser Mandate, Caroline Clifford, industrial officer Mandate, Frank McDonnell, Limerick Trades Council. 
Picture: Gareth Williams

Mike McNamara, president of Limerick Trades Council, Karen Wall, divisional organiser Mandate, Caroline Clifford, industrial officer Mandate, Frank McDonnell, Limerick Trades Council. Picture: Gareth Williams

  • by Nick Rabbitts
 

PEOPLE across Limerick are being encouraged to shop in retail outlets which recognise trade unions.

As part of the Fair Shop initiative by trade union Mandate, shoppers in Limerick are being asked to spend their money in outlets “where workers are respected”.

In Limerick, these stores are Argos, Boots, Brown Thomas, Debenhams, Heatons, Hickeys, Penneys. Shaws, Show Zone, Superquinn and Tesco.

These stores all recognise and engage with Mandate, and associated unions.

Representatives of these stores attended a special launch event this Tuesday night at City Hall, where Mayor Kathleen Leddin pledged her support to the scheme.

The event was also addressed by Gerry Light, Mandate Assistant General Secretary.

Karen Wall, Mandate’s Divisional Organiser in Limerick explained that a Fair Shop employer is one that recognises their employees’ basic right to join a union and also very importantly affords workers’ representatives full collective bargaining rights. Across the country designated Fair Shops include Argos, Arnotts, Boots, Brown Thomas, Caulfield’s Supervalu, Clerys, Debenhams, Heaton’s, Hickeys, Marks & Spencer, Penneys, Pettitt’s Supervalu, Shaws, Shoe Zone, Superquinn and Tesco Ireland.

“In Limerick there are 23 Fair Shop’s and we are asking local consumers to shop with them because they respect their workers. By doing so, consumers are supporting and promoting quality employment in the Irish retail sector.”

Mayor Kathleen Leddin added: “The retail sector provides an important source of employment in Limerick. The thousands of employees of retail business throughout Limerick have played a central role in sustaining the local sector.”

However, she also warned that the contribution workers is not always recognised by employers.

“The desire to enhance profit margins sometimes comes at the expense of workers,” she said.

Encouraging shoppers to use a Fair Shop in Limerick, she added: “By spending their money at one of these shops, consumers are showing they reward employers which respect workers.”

Mandate is asking the people to sign a pledge to support the Fair Shop scheme. This can be found at www.fairshop.ie.

 

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